Calypso Soup with Black-eyed Peas and Spinach

If you’re from the South, chances are pretty good that you eat some combination of black-eyed peas, collard greens, rice, and cornbread on January 1st for luck and wealth in the new year. Try this calypso soup for a change of pace.

Rice for riches,
Peas for pennies,
Collards for dollars,
Cornbread for gold.
– Our State Magazine

I eat collards, but there are a lot of other leafy greens I like better, so I substitute. I hope it doesn’t affect my “dollars.”

Calypso Soup with Black-eyed Peas and Spinach

This hearty soup has you covered, especially if you eat a small slice of cornbread with it. I was totally amazed by the flavors – the soup is beefy, earthy due to the sweet potatoes and black-eyed peas, and tropical because of the coconut milk. And then the curry powder gives it a nice kick without making it too spicy hot.

If you need some other ideas about how to get in your black-eyed peas and greens for New Year’s, you might want to try Black-eyed Pea Corn Cakes with Spicy Sour Cream or Collard Greens with Black-eyed Peas and Tomatoes.

Happy 2016!

Calypso Soup with Black-eyed Peas and Spinach
Hearty soup to bring you good luck in the new year
Recipe type: Soups & Stews
Serves: 6
  • 1½ pounds ground beef
  • 1 cup peeled, diced sweet potato
  • ½ cup chopped onion
  • ½ cup chopped red bell pepper
  • 1 teaspoon curry powder
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups beef broth or water
  • 1 can (14½ ounces) black-eyed peas, rinsed and drained
  • 1 can (14 ounces) unsweetened light coconut milk
  • 2 cups baby spinach leaves, stems removed
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme
  • salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
  1. Heat a large skillet over medium heat. Add ground beef and cook, stirring occasionally and breaking into crumbles, until no longer pink, about 10 minutes.
  2. Remove meat to a paper-towel lined plate. Press additional paper towels on top of meat to further reduce fat.
  3. Discard all but 1 tablespoon of fat in skillet. Add sweet potato, onion, bell pepper, and curry powder. Cook, stirring occasionally, until onion is crisp-tender, about 5 minutes.
  4. Stir in flour and cook for about 1 minute.
  5. Add broth or water, black-eyed peas, and coconut milk. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat. Cover and simmer until sweet potato is tender, about 10 minutes.
  6. Stir in spinach and thyme. Cook until spinach wilts, about 1 minute.
  7. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
If you'd like to reduce the fat in this recipe, use ground turkey or chicken instead of beef and use chicken broth or water instead of beef broth. You could also reduce the amount of coconut milk or replace some of it with coconut water.

If you're watching your Sodium intake, buy dried black-eyed peas and cook them yourself instead of using canned. You might also want to use water or low-sodium broth.
Nutrition Information
Calories: 416 Fat: 24g Saturated fat: 14g Carbohydrates: 21g Sugar: 3g Sodium: 685mg Fiber: 3g Protein: 28g Cholesterol: 70mg
Calypso Soup with Black-eyed Peas and Spinach


  1. Karen says

    Eating soups for lunch at work as a healthy alternative to sandwiches keeps my BGL in check. This recipe has it all! Your blog is a lifesaver to this recently diagnosed diabetic who loves to cook. Thank you!

  2. Shelby Kinnaird says

    Thanks, Karen! I love soup for lunch too. I’m glad you’re finding what you need on the blog. If you ever have suggestions or want to share some recipes, let me know.

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